Hardangervidda National park from Geilo and the North East side
Geilo is a national park village and is the entrance to two national parks. The large and well-known National Park Hardangervidda and the mighty National Park Hallingskarvet.
Geilo is located in Hol municipality and is located in a small valley between these two national parks. With Geilo as a starting point, you have opportunities for both short and long day trips and is the perfect starting point for multi-day trips with two nights or to cross the entire Hardangervidda. Geilo is located at the crossroads between Hallingdal and Numedal and therefor you will have the opportunity to start hiking and biking from both valleys.
Hardangervidda National Park is located in the counties of Buskerud, Telemark and Hordaland, and is Northern Europe's largest high mountain plateau. There are great opportunities for hiking, fishing and hunting. Hardangervidda is available all year round. Large parts are covered with flat plains, but on the west side the Hardangervidda is more hilly. Are you a new beginner for hiking with a big backpack we advice you to start from the east side.
In winter, there are winter trails to the various DNT cabins. On the website of DNT you can also find forecasts both winter and summer (sorry only in Norwegian), these are very useful to find out if the summer bridge is in place or if you need skis to get to the cabin. In the summer (around the start of July) it is possible to walk on the plateau, then most of the snow is gone. (Check out and order det cabins at www.ut.no).
Do you need a DNT key or map? Geilo Tourist Information sells keys and maps. You will find the tourist information at Reiselivssentret in the center of Geilo. +47 32 09 59 00
The best thing about starting from Geilo is easy access to transport. Travel easy from Oslo, Bergen or airport and take the train to Geilo. The company www.vy.no delivers trains on the well-known Bergen line. Sit down and watch southern Norway come by as the train slowly and surely climbs up through Hallingdal. After arrival in Geilo, there is a wide range of accommodation, many shops for the latest purchases or the opportunity to start directly on a trip or further travel to the Hardangervidda by bus.
If you want to get even closer to the Hardangervidda then Geilo, you can take the train to Ustaoset or Haugastøl and Finse. There is also bus 334 from Braker which runs to Haugastøl which is the start of Rallarvegen. The bus runs all year round, but be aware that bus departure and arrival can vary throughout the season and in summer must be booked in advance. Another possibility is bus 991 from skyss.no which drives to Eidfjord. High season summer it runs twice daily, there is no bus in winter. We recommend checking the transport options at www.entur.no.
Tuva Bus - usually there is a Tuva bus in the summer that runs Monday to Friday, departure once a day. The bus takes three quarters of an hour from Geilo train station all the way to Tuva Turisthytte. Leave the car and use the bus to get to the Hardangervidda. Return to Geilo as a day trip or go down to Ustaoset and take a train, bus or taxi back to Geilo. Tuva Bussen is a private initiative, check www.entur.no or Brakar's website for current departures. Of course you can also use the Tuva Bus after your trip to get you nicely and quickly down to Geilo.
Take bus 991 or drive to Halne Fjellstugu and take Halnekongen to start your short or long adventure on the Hardangervidda in a relaxed way. The boat takes three quarters of an hour from Halne to Skaupa or Sleipa and is perfect as a day trip or soft start or end from your multi-day trip on the Hardangervidda. The boat corresponds to the bus. For more information and to buy tickets see our website geilo.com. The boat usually starts in early July and into August.
If you prefer to travel with your own car, there are two major entrances to Geilo. The easiest way to drive all year round is national road 7. Follow the train line through Hallingdal and see Norway's cultural landscape change from fertile large areas with agriculture to small farms with grazing animals. If you come by boat from Larvik, just follow road 40 up through the forest in Numedalen. After some ascent pst Rødberg, you finally get to see the mighty national park Hallingskarvet as a guide in the distance. Fylkesvei 40 is a bit narrower and more complicated to drive than rv7, but provides good views and opportunities for stops and sights.
Long-term parking is only available on the north side of Geilo train station.
From Geilo it takes about an hour by car to drive to Tuva, the road has tolls and is paid on a website 48 hours after you have driven out again. If you choose Dagali as a starting point for your trip on the Hardangervidda, this is half an hour from Geilo. Ustaoset is only 10 minutes from the center of Geilo but has poor parking facilities. There is day parking at the supermarket in the center of Ustaoset for a fee. Haugastøl is also only a half hour drive from Geilo. Here you can park at the train station and in the parking lot right by Rallarvegen.
Along the national tourist road rv7 further up the Hardangervidda, there are several parking options. You can also park at one of the tourist cabins for a fee.
National cycling route number 5
Are you planning to come by bike to Geilo from the south of Norway, then we advice you to choose the national cycling route number 5 through Numedalslågen.
Please leave this route in Rødberg and choose the fantastic forrest road called Smådøldalen. You won't regred this if you want to be away from cars and out in nature. Are you more of an asphalt person then we suggest you cycle towards Tunhovd with a great steep part in the beginning, but when you reach the lake you will love this more quite road. Are you in a hurry, then just follow the national cycling route number 5.
From Geilo you have to choose between to fantastic routes. Towards the famous Rallarvegen or the lovely Hallingdalsruta and plase continue to Mølkevegen.
Do you want to cycle the Rallarvegen you can catch the train to Haugastøl with your bike and start safe and nicely on the Rallarvegen. Rather want to bike the whole part, then you choose road number 7 towards Haugastøl for 28km. Be aware of the amount of (big) traffic on this road. Wear colours and reflecs have all your lights on and blinking.
Hallingdalsruta and Mjølkevegen
Cycle to Lauvrud waste station and then leave all the fush behind you. Follow the national cycling road number 4 to Gol, from here you can pick up the fantastic Mjølkevegen.
Winter starts in the end of October and the beginning of November, but a more stable period is from mid-February. The snow can last until May and sometimes it is possible to go skiing in early June. Check conditions on the website of DNT, or hear directly at one of the tourist cabins on the Hardangervidda where you plan to go to. A webcam from the Norwegian Public Roads Administration can also give you an impression of the snow conditions.
Hiking opportunities in the winter can be short nice walks on snowshoes, go where you want to go, make your own route. Go when the darkness has fallen over the landscape and the stars and moon will light you, bring a sack with firewood and a tent and feel like a real adventurer. Snowshoes can be rented in Geilo at Slaatta Ski Center or via Geilo Aktiv at Vestlia. You do not need any experience to go snowshoeing, but if you would rather join a guided snowshoe trip then you can see all the possibilities on our website Geilo.com
There are also a number of groomed cross-country trails from Geilo to Hakkesetstølen (or take a chairlift from Vestlia) on to Grønebakken then to Ustetind, come down to Ustaoset on to Prestholt and down to Geilo. We call this trip the Veslerunden. You will find updatet information about which cross country trail is groomed at www.skisporet.no This website and app is for free.
Most famous winter activity is probably going from cabin to cabin via winter trails on the Hardangervidda. See the white-clad plateau and get into the heat for a good meal and delicious accommodation. Winter routes starts from the midle of Febraury and the start of March. If you are going on a mountain ski trip, you need at least a backpack with extra clothes, a map and compass, food and drink and some experience. Mountain skiing can be rented at Geilo Skishop with easy access from the train station at Dr. Holm's hotel and in Hauagstøl. Remember to book accommodation on ut.no and feel free to read more about mountain skiing on DNT's website.
If you start from Geilo, you can get a soft start of your trip by taking a chairlift up in Vestlia, on to Hakkesetstølen where the Hardangervidda opens up for great short trips that suit children or trips that last for several days with accommodation in a tent or cabin.
It is easy to follow DNT's trail network throughout the Hardangervidda, but we recommend bringing a map and compass. You can not rely on mobile coverage or enough battery to use digital aids. You can drink water from a river as long as there is good conduct, think before you drink. DNT cabins must be booked in advance, you can set up tents wherever you want, but think of Allemannsretten - the right to roam. There is a fire ban from April to September.
For fishing licenses, we recommend inatur.no or Geilo Jeger and Fiskeforening for water in Hol municipality.
In summer on the mountains of Norway, you must expect an average speed of 3km / h. This is without long breaks. The reason for this is that most people go with a backpack, the landscape goes up and down in rough terrain, the walking routes are just single tracks.
Last updated: 01/11/2022
Source: Visit Geilo AS
Hardangervidda National park from Geilo and the North East side